Tad Simons

Tad Simons

Contributing editor Tad Simons is an award-winning journalist whose writing on the local arts scene has appeared in the Twin Cities Reader, City Pages, St. Paul Pioneer Press, American Theatre magazine, BackStage, Variety and the Washington Post. Over his 25 year career, Tad has covered theater, books, music, visual arts, dance, film, and performance art (including politics). Tad’s articles and essays on these and other subjects have won more than 30 local and national awards for editorial excellence.

David Byrne's Playing the Building art installation @ Aria

One of the great things about crazy art installations is that they stretch your imagination more than your wallet.

Cindy Sherman
A Must-See: Cindy Sherman @ Walker Art Center

One often hears it said that Cindy Sherman is one of the most influential and important artists working today.

Nicholas David on The Voice
Here's the ONLY WAY Nicholas David can win The Voice finale tonight.

As almost everyone in the Twin Cities knows by now, our newest hometown hero, Nicholas David—aka Nicholas “The Feelin” Mrozinski (as featured in the June 2009 issue of Mpls/St.Paul magazine)—is singing/fighting for his television life Monday night.

Nicholas David on The Voice
Why Nicholas David Didn't Win The Voice (and that's okay)

Drat. I was right (below) about Nicholas David's chances on The Voice, but the fact that he came in third place behind Terry McDermott exposed some of the show's bogusness when it comes to voting. 

Frozen Docs Series: 'The House I Live In'

These days, documentary filmmakers are shouldering much of the burden and bother of investigative journalism that newspapers, magazines, and the rest of the media-massage complex has largely abandoned. 

River's Edge Music Fest
Why River's Edge Music Fest is never coming back.

This is getting ridiculous. After promising to deliver the biggest, best, most tremendously super-awesome summer concert series the Twin Cities has ever seen...

The Book of Mormon
Will your brain explode if you see The Book of Mormon?

Permit me to talk seriously for a moment about The Book of Mormon, the sacrilegious song-fest popping eyeballs and frying neurons this week at The Orpheum Theatre.

Minnesota and the Civil War: Yes, We Were There
Minnesota and the Civil War: Yes, We Were There

I will be the first to admit that when it comes to the history of the Civil War, the role Minnesotans might have played does not leap immediately to mind.

New Yorker cartoonist Roz Chast's visit; and Andy Warhol is in town . . . again.

I had the honor Thursday night (and again Friday morning) of meeting and introducing the legendary New Yorker cartoonist Roz Chast to the crowd gathered for the Hennepin County Library Association’s Pen Pals Lecture Series at Hopkins Center for the Arts.

The Primrose Path
Review: The Primrose Path @ The Guthrie is worth walking down

Before discussing the Guthrie’s new play, The Primrose Path, I must admit up front that I have a strong Turgenev bias.

What Happens if the Minnesota Orchestra and Management Never Agree?

Date: June 1, 2042 

Mini Golf at the Walker Art Center
Photos: Walker Mini-Golf is Officially Open

This year, the Walker Art Center's artist-designed mini-golf course features two eight-hole courses, both of which offer some fiendishly difficult—and entertaining—holes.

War Horse at The Orpheum
Review: War Horse @ The Orpheum

Everyone loves a good horse story, it seems—even if they already know the plot. And War Horse is a great horse story, one virtually everyone in America knows from the beloved Steven Spielberg movie, and one that audiences around the country are reliving through the Broadway road-show theater production stabled at The Orpheum for the next ten days.

The Block E Art Project: Definitely Made Here

So, Block E—the saddest square block in the upper Midwest—has finally succumbed to the soul-sucking emptiness of its new reality, and the city, desperate to do something—anything—to counter the ever-expanding black hole of capitalism Block E has become, has decided to do what all cities do (including Detroit) after they’ve tried everything else: throw it to the artists.

Tad Simons' dog, Sarge
My dog, Sarge, Reviews the International Cat Video Festival

Because the Walker Art Center's International Cat Video Festival at the Minnesota State Fair Grandstand Wednesday night was such an important event for cat-lovers everywhere, I have invited someone much more qualified than me to evaluate the pros and cons of the festival: my dog, Sarge.

Does the MN Orchestra board want Osmo Vanska to resign?

If the Minnesota Orchestra’s management has made one thing perfectly clear during its year-long dispute with the musicians, the only thing it cares about are the numbers.

A piece of art from Claes Oldenburg: The Sixties at Walker Art Center
Review: Claes Oldenburg: The Sixties @ Walker Art Center

The big Claes Oldenburg exhibit—Claes Oldenburg: The Sixties—is finally open at the Walker Art Center, and, as Walker exhibits go, it’s definitely one of them.

Billy Crystal
Review: Billy Crystal's 700 Sundays @ The State Theatre

What is there to say about Billy Crystal that hasn’t already been said? The man has been part of America’s collective comedic consciousness for almost forty years, and is never far away from a TV or movie screen near you.

American Spirits: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition exhibit at the Minnesota History Center
American Spirits: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition @ MN History Center

America’s Puritanical stripe has never been wider or weirder than it was during the era of Prohibition (1920-33), when the federal government—pretending to act upon “the will of the people”—passed the 18th Amendment of the Constitution, outlawing the manufacture, distribution, and sale of demon alcohol.

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